Tag Archives: leftovers

Tomato Wine

My dad grew up in the Depression years, so if anything could be conserved and/or reused, our family did it.  Wasting food wasn’t quite a cardinal sin, but we mourned the occasional demise of a leftover with the regret most people would feel over losing a $5 bill.

I inherited the food-conservation compulsion.

So.  You may recall that Hubby and I grew a gigantic and successful veggie garden this year.  The tomatoes were particularly prolific.  We ate fresh tomatoes with almost every meal, and I canned quarts and quarts of them.  Then I made salsa, ketchup, tomato paste, and green tomato pickle.  I gave away tomatoes to friends, neighbours, and the food bank; and the tomatoes just kept coming.

We still have so many tomatoes that for once in my life, I’ve stopped worrying about wasting them.  (Okay, not really; but at least I’m slightly less obsessive about it.)  So I’m trying something new:  Tomato wine and tomato cider.

It may not be as weird as it sounds; or at least we’re not the first to attempt it.  I have no idea whether it will be tasty, barely drinkable, or vile rocket fuel; but at this point I have nothing to lose but a couple of pounds of sugar and a package of yeast.

Wine-making vocabulary always makes me wonder whether I’m fermenting a beverage or describing some kind of medieval torture: Pitching the yeast, racking off… it all sounds painful and barbaric.  But drinking our tomato hooch might actually turn out to be akin to medieval torture; so maybe the vocabulary is more appropriate than I realize.

Even if it fails, it’s an interesting experiment; and at least I tried to Not Waste Food.  I think my dad would be pleased:  His chokecherry wine was legendary.  (Keeping in mind that ‘legendary’ can be astoundingly good or abysmally bad.  It was definitely memorable.)

Anybody else ever made tomato wine or cider?  Or have more ideas for using another twenty pounds of tomatoes?  Maybe tomato ice cream…?

Book 15 update:  Another good writing week!  I’m in the middle of Chapter 9 with flashing lights and sirens, and Arnie’s found another feline friend.

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Schrödinger’s Leftovers

Today I’m opening the fridge doors of my brain and combining my questionable leftovers to create this week’s meal… erm, post:

The bright spot of my week came from jenny_o’s blog, Procrastinating Donkey.  She mentioned an article about a raccoon that climbed over 70 storeys up a construction crane and then took a dump (or, as the media delicately described it, “made a poo”) before climbing down again.  The article is over two years old but somehow I had missed it the first time around, and I laughed until I could do nothing but slump in my chair clutching my aching belly and wiping away tears of mirth.

It’s tempting to believe that the raccoon was stating its opinion on human construction in general and the crane in particular; but the truth is probably much more prosaic.  Its sphincter was likely clenched during the whole climb, and when it arrived at the top and looked over the edge it had a perfectly natural response.  I’d probably shit myself, too, if I looked down to see nothing but 700 feet of empty air under me.  Just looking at the photo makes my butt pucker.

And speaking of terrifying views…

I was walking past the book display in Superstore when I glanced over at the books in the children’s section.  I froze in mid-stride, my jaw dropping as a horrific thought flashed through my mind:  “Good God, somebody published a children’s book about Donald Trump!”

An understandable mistake, yes?

Fortunately for my sanity, I was wrong.  But I’m still shuddering at the thought of a ‘touch & feel’ book that includes a swatch of Trump’s hair.  Blargh!  Now I need to go and wash my hands for about half an hour.  And while I’m at it, I’d like to rinse out my brain, preferably with brain bleach.

And on the topic of rinsing out icky stuff…

The other day I was cleaning the Soggy-Something-Or-Others (SSOOs) out of the drain after washing dishes.  I removed them gingerly (that word always makes me smirk, since I am a ginger) with my fingertips, ’cause, ew; right?  Then I had to chuckle over the fact that less than half an hour ago I’d been gobbling that very food with enthusiasm; and after floating around in hot soapy water the SSOOs were actually cleaner than what I’d just put in my mouth.

But that just proves Schrödinger’s Law of Leftovers:  If you believe a leftover is safe to eat in any given instant, you can eat it and be perfectly fine.  But if you believe it’s rotten, that same leftover eaten at that same instant will make you sick.

Which creates those awkward moments where I look in the fridge and think, “Yeah, it’s probably okay to eat that… but… maybe not.”

And I don’t throw it away because it’s probably still okay; but Hubby and I each know in our heart of hearts that we won’t eat it.  I don’t know why we don’t just figure out that if we’re having doubts about eating it now, we sure as hell won’t eat it after it’s been putrefying and/or petrifying for another 24 hours.

But that would make too much sense.  And hey; Schrödinger’s Leftovers.  It’s probably just fine…

What’s cooking in your world this week?

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